TEL AVIV, Israel (TheBlaze/AP) — Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert says his successor Benjamin Netanyahu’s criticism of the U.S. after the Iran nuclear deal amounts to a declaration of war, according to the Jerusalem Post.
“We have declared war on the US. That cannot be disputed,” Olmert said Sunday, noted the Post, adding that Israel needs to stay away from what might appear to be a “fight” with its closest ally.
Speaking before a security conference, Olmert said Netanyahu’s public barbs over the American-led nuclear deal were provocative and counterproductive. He said he too would differ with the American president, but always made sure to do so in private.
Netanyahu isn’t backing down, though.
“In contrast to others, when I see that the vital security interests of Israeli citizens are at stake, I will not shut up,” he said following critical remarks made by Olmert, the Post noted.
“It is very easy to keep quiet. It is easy to receive pats on the shoulder from the international community, to bow one’s head, but I am committed to the security of my people,” he stated, the Post said. “I am committed to the future of my country, and in contrast to periods in the past, we have a loud and clear voice among the nations and we will make it heard in order to warn – in time – against dangers”
Netanyahu has called the interim deal with Iran an “historic mistake,” declared Israel not bound by the agreement, and said he believes Iran is determined to produce a nuclear bomb and that offering it relief from sanctions at this time amounts to appeasement.